A New Life

By the time the Archemax steamed into port at Great Glade, the anxiety in Nate's stomach had resurfaced. He walked up to the Helm where Cirrus Gladehawk, Squall Razortooth, Weelum and Slip stood congratulating the Professor on finding the bottom of the Edge Cliff. As Nate approached the congratulations began to come his way as well. Nate made small talk about the descent, but his mind was preoccupied with thoughts of what was going to happen when he met up with Eudoxia. Weelum seemed to pick up on this shift in Nate's behavior and grunted "Wuh, wuh - wuh," The time has come for Nate to walk the path into new futures. "Yes, old friend, it is time for Nate to embrace his new life," replied Squall as he ushered Nate over to the gangway. Nate bade them all a goodnight, and walked off of the docks.

Nate departed for his new home. His head swam with all of the things that had changed. He had inherited everything from Friston Drew, according to the will that Felftis Brack had tried to conceal. Nate now owned a fortune, a house in New Lake, and a phraxship construction company.

Arriving at his new home, Nate went inside and up to the master bedroom, his bedroom. He placed down his precious ironwood chest at the foot of the large, illustrious bed and began to sift through the memories in the box, when he realized that the sun was beginning to set with a warm, orange-pink glow. Remembering his arrangements with Eudoxia, he hastily jumped off the bed. He ran down the stairs, putting on his top coat as he drove himself forward, flung open the door and raced towards the east side of New Lake, toward the Prade Mansion.

As he entered the grounds he expected to find Eudoxia near the gardens, tending to the prowlgrins, but she was nowhere to be found. As he came around to the front of the house, he began to walk down the dock onto the lake when he noticed a figure standing at the end of the dock. In the setting, sun the figure's hair caught light perfectly, giving it the impression of flowing gold.

"Eudoxia . . ." he breathed quietly.

The figure, hearing his approach, slowly turned around. Nate's eyes nearly rolled out of his head. There before him, stood a gorgeous girl, the same age as him, with beautiful, flowing, golden hair, fair skin and flashing emerald green eyes.

"Nate!" she exclaimed loudly, as she realized who stood before her. Nate broke into a run, "Eudoxia!" he called. He ran forward, the anxiety all but gone, to be replaced by sheer excitement. As ran up to her, she threw her arms around him and hugged him fiercely; a hug that he was eager to return and hold for a while.

"You came back!" she said excitedly, looking up from their hug.

"I made a promise to you, I needed to come back, " he replied, gazing down on her elegant features.

At that moment, nothing else mattered and time seemed to slow down to a crawl. All there was in the world was Nate, Eudoxia and that dreamy stare that played over her beautiful face. Filled with emotion and now on the verge of crying Eudoxia broke the silence and peeked her head up out of Nate's chest once more. "I have been waiting for you, and now here you are," choked Eudoxia, unable to hold the tears back any longer. Nate brushed away a lock of hair that now lay in her face, taking with it a glistening tear that was making its way down the fair skin of her cheek.

"I intended to keep my promise and now I am here to fulfill it," Nate said gently, his gaze roaming over her delicate features.

They held each other there for a while longer, in each other's arms and watching the sun set over the lake. Nate was the first to speak as he leaned down toward Eudoxia and whispered, "Listen, there is something that I need to tell you." Almost in response, Eudoxia picked her head up and held it closer to Nate's, breathing carefully upon his lips. Making sure to hold his gaze with her delicate, flashing green eyes, she whispered in the tiniest of voices, "But there is something that I need to do first." Closing her eyes she leaned in closer, her nose grazing Nate's. She hesitated at the last second and then leaned forward the last inch and pressed her lips gently against his.

Nate mind ceased to function, all he knew was that there was a beautiful girl pressing her warm lips on his, and that his heart was beating frantically within his chest. Almost, instinctively, he coiled his arms around her waist, up her back, and into her golden hair.

They stood there a moment, wrapped in each others arms, frozen in time. Nate felt as if he could have stood there all night and through the next day, but his cramping muscles, fatigued from descending the Edge, forced him to break their kiss. Nate couldn't speak, his mind was racing with the events that were unfolding. His heart fluttered excitedly in his chest and felt as if it were going to burst.

Eudoxia, now gazing dreamily at him, murmured in his ear, "I love you, Nate Quarter." Instantly finding his voice, Nate whispered, "I love you too, Eudoxia Prade."

They stood there for what felt like hours, in each other's arms, staring out at the sunset as it, at last, set over New Lake, bringing with it a night which neither of them would soon forget.